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Steny H.
Democrat MD 5

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  • American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

    by Representative Steny H. Hoyer

    Posted on 2013-01-01

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    HOYER. I thank the gentleman for his leadership, and I thank Mr. Camp for his leadership.

    There is, of course, a time for partisanship. There is a time for making our political points, and that time has been, and it will be again. That time is not tonight.

    All of us have traveled throughout this country; and we have heard our constituents, our neighbors and our friends say, please, don't have us go over the cliff. They're not sure exactly what ``going over the cliff'' means, but they intuitively and deeply feel that it will not be good to go over that cliff. And so we come to this floor tonight with almost everyone who has spoken saying this bill is not perfect, and, of course, that observation could be applied to any and all bills that we consider in this House.

    Compromise is not the art of perfection. By its very definition, a compromise contains elements that neither side likes. But it also contains pieces both sides can embrace. What we will do tonight is not only adopt a piece of legislation that will give literally tens of millions of Americans the assurance that their taxes will not be raised; millions of small businesses assurance that their taxes will not be raised; millions of people who, through no fault of their own, are struggling to find a job and trying to keep bread on their table the assurance that we will be there to help.

    Tonight, we will come together and do something else. With 37\1/2\ hours left to go in the 112th Congress, we will display to all of our constituents that, yes, in the final analysis, we have the ability to come together, to act not as Republicans, not as Democrats, but as Americans, 435 of us sent here by our neighbors and friends to try to do the best we can, realizing that there are 435 points of view that sit in this Chamber, and that what we strive to do is to reconcile those differences to create consensus, for without consensus, democracy cannot work.

    There will be time for partisan differences. There will be time for partisan confrontation in the days in the 113th Congress. But this night, as we [[Page H7556]] end the 112th Congress, as we have strived mightily to come to an agreement with great difficulty and realizing that all of us have very strong feelings, I severely regret that this is not a big, bold, and balanced plan.

    The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.

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